ACADEMIC COURSE 2020-2021 school year DESCRIPTIONS - Western Reserve Academy

 
western reserve academy
ACADEMIC COURSE
DESCRIPTIONS
2020–2021 school year
table of contents

ALL COURSE LIST........................................................ Page 3

COLLEGE LEVEL COURSE LIST................................... Page 5

ENGLISH..................................................................... Page 6

FINE & PERFORMING ARTS......................................... Page 12

HISTORY..................................................................... Page 15

INTEGRATED STUDIES & DESIGN............................... Page 20

MATHEMATICS........................................................... Page 24

MODERN & CLASSICAL LANGUAGES......................... Page 27

SCIENCE..................................................................... Page 31

GRADUATION REQUIREMENTS................................... Page 35

FOUR YEAR EDUCATIONAL PLAN............................... Page 36
ALL COURSES 2020–21

ENGLISH                                                   HISTORY

Foundations of Text                                       Exploring Global Foundations
Explorations of Analysis                                  Building the Modern World
Angles in Writing                                         United States History
Studies in English:Detective Fiction                      CL United States History
Studies in English: Human Struggles                       Introduction to Arabic and Arab Cultures (half credit)
Studies in English: Graphic Novels                        Middle East Studies →
Studies in English: A Few of My Favorite Things           Art History: Raphael to Renoir
Studies in English: Shakespeare, Page and Stage           Art History: Paint, Build, Shoot!
Studies in English: American Nature Writing &             CL Art History →
   Environmental Issues                                   CL Economics
Studies in English: Identity Crisis: When Cultures        International Relations →
   Clash                                                  CL US Government & Politics →
Studies in English: Film Studies: A Baker’s Dozen         Space Race-Fighting Cold War on New Frontier (half
Studies in English: Creative Writing: Fiction &               credit)
   Playwriting (half credit)                              CL Comparative Politics (half credit)
Studies in English: African American Nonfiction           Vietnam: Humbling a Superpower (half credit)
Studies in English: African American Fiction              The American Presidency (half credit)
Studies in English/Original Voices                        CL Philosophy
Studies in English/Young Authors                          Global Health (half credit)
Studies in English/Speculative Fiction                    Native American Heritage & Culture (half credit)
Studies in English/Epistolary Writing                     History of Hudson and WRA (half credit)
                                                          Reading the City (half credit)
CL English: Graphic Novels                                Modern East Asian History (half credit)
CL English: Author Study: An In-depth Look
CL English: Shakespearean Lenses                          INTEGRATED STUDIES & DESIGN
CL English: Women and Fiction
CL English: Matters of Memory                             Learn to Code (half credit)
CL English: Author Study                                  Learn to Make (half credit)
CL English: Power of Language                             Learn to Live Well (half credit)
                                                          Learn to College (half credit)
FINE & PERFORMING ARTS                                    CL Compass
                                                          Automotive Engineering Design (half credit)
Art I (half credit)                                       Exercise Physiology (half credit)
Art II (half credit)                                      Engineering and Fabrication (half credit)
Environmental Art (half credit)                           Advanced Engineering and Fabrication (half credit)
Advanced Studio Art (half credit)                         Graphic Design and Illustration (half credit)
Photography →                                             3D Printing and Design (half credit)
Ceramics I (half credit)                                  E-textiles and Fabrics (half credit)
Ceramics II (half credit)                                 Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning (half
3D I (half credit)                                            credit)
3D II (half credit)                                       Idea to Product: How to Start a Business (half credit)
Dance                                                     Digital Video Editing and Effects (half credit)
Honors Dance                                              Financial Literacy (half credit)
Choir                                                     This Old Barn (half credit)
String Orchestra                                          Digital Fabrication Capstone (half credit)
Symphonic Winds                                           Service-Learning Engineering (half credit)
CL Music Theory                                           Introduction to Geography →
Studio Music (half credit)                                Introduction to Geographic Information Systems →
The Jazz Ensemble                                         Computer Programming: Python (half credit)
Acting for the Stage (half credit/full credit)            CL Computer Science
Advanced Acting (half credit/full credit)                 Costuming for Everyone
Stagecraft: (half credit)                                 Book Arts
Digital Music Production (half credit)                    Disruptive Ideas
                                                          Speech

      → Not offered in the 2020-2021 school year. Look forward to taking this course in a future academic year.
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ALL COURSES 2020–21

MATHEMATICS                                              Topics in Spanish Language and Culture I (half
                                                             credit)
Math 11 Algebra I                                        Topics in Spanish Language and Culture II (half
Math 21 Geometric and Algebraic Reasoning                    credit)
Math 22 Honors Geometric & Algebraic Reasoning           CL Spanish - Spain →
Math 31 Intermediate Algebraic & Geometric               CL Spanish - Latin America
    Reasoning                                            Ancient Greek →
Math 32 Honors Intermediate Algebraic & Geometric        Introduction to Ancient Greek →
    Reasoning                                            Introduction to German →
Math 41 Precalculus
Math 42 Honors Precalculus                               SCIENCE
Math 43 Accelerated Precalculus
Calculus                                                 Biology
CL Calculus AB                                           Chemistry
CL Calculus BC                                           Honors Chemistry
CL Statistics                                            Experimental Physics
CL Calculus-based Probability & Statistics →             Physics
CL Multivariable Calculus (half credit)                  Honors Physics
CL Linear Algebra (half credit)                          CL Microbiology
Introduction to Data Science (half credit)               CL Pathobiology of Human Disease
Discrete Mathematics (half credit) →                     CL Chemistry
                                                         CL Physics
MODERN & CLASSICAL LANGUAGES                             Biotechnology (half credit)
                                                         Cancer Immunology I
French I                                                 Cancer Immunology II
French II                                                Cancer Immunology III
French III                                               Cancer Informatics (half credit)
Honors French III                                        Ecological Sustainability
Topics in French Language and Culture I (half credit)    Astronomy (half credit)
Topics in French Language and Culture II (half           Advanced Astronomy (half credit)
    credit)                                              CL SynBio - Inventing with DNA
CL French Language and Culture                           Marine Biology →
Latin I
Latin II
Latin III
Honors Latin III
Topics in Latin Literature I (half credit)
Topics in Latin Literature II (half credit)
CL Latin Literature
Mandarin Chinese I
Mandarin Chinese II
Mandarin Chinese III
Topics in Chinese Language and Culture I (half
    credit)
Topics in Chinese Language and Culture II (half
    credit)
CL Mandarin Chinese
Spanish I
Spanish II
Honors Spanish II
Spanish III
Honors Spanish III

    → Not offered in the 2020-2021 school year. Look forward to taking this course in a future academic year.
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COLLEGE LEVEL COURSES 2020–21

ENGLISH
Graphic Novels
Author Study: An In-depth Look
Shakespearean Lenses
Women and Fiction
Matters of Memory
Author Study
Power of Language

FINE & PERFORMING ARTS
Music Theory

HISTORY
United States History
Art History
Economics
US Government & Politics → (half credit)
Comparative Politics (half credit)
Philosophy

INTEGRATED STUDIES & DESIGN
Compass
Computer Science

MATHEMATICS
Calculus AB
Calculus BC
Statistics
Calculus Based Probability and Statistics →
Multivariable Calculus (half credit)
Linear Algebra (half credit)

MODERN & CLASSICAL LANGUAGES
French Language and Culture
Latin Literature
Mandarin Chinese
Spanish - Spain →
Spanish - Latin America

SCIENCE
Microbiology
Pathobiology of Human Disease
Chemistry
Physics
SynBio - Inventing with DNA
       → Not offered in the 2020-2021 school year. Look forward to taking this course in a future academic year.
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COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
                                      ENGLISH

Foundations of Text: Open to freshmen and sophomores, this course introduces students to the
study of composition and literature at WRA. The focus of this class is primarily on texts in written
form; however, students will engage in various modes of storytelling in an effort to learn and solidify
reading and discussion strategies. Teachers encourage and promote active reading, including but not
limited to paying attention to details and recognizing how those details contribute to the overall
story. In connection, this class emphasizes effective annotation, class discussion, textual analysis,
and thematic and esthetic appreciation. Writing instruction is centered on grammar, compelling
statements, and logical development — all in the context of students’ own expository paragraphs
(exemplification, definition, classification and division, comparison and contrast). Students write
a short composition most weeks of each semester; moreover, they engage in the writing process,
including revision. In the spring, students take a common grammar assessment that tests their
mastery of language skills covered over the course of the year.

Explorations in Analysis: Open to sophomores and juniors, this course emphasizes various techniques
and approaches for exploring and discussing literature. Students will learn how to engage with the
text, discern meaning, formulate an argument, and present their argument in clear and constructive
ways. Building on skills that were taught in Foundations of Text, students will continue to work on
developing their close reading and discussion skills, while also strengthening their ability to develop,
coordinate, and organize their ideas. Students submit an essay every two to three weeks, and most
assignments challenge students to present analyses of the literary text under consideration. Readings
and explorations include (but are not limited to): human fallibility and resilience; identity; freedom and
confinement; the power of language; and memoir and storytelling. Students develop the vocabulary
to handle the course’s increasing literary and rhetorical sophistication. In the spring, students take
a common grammar and style assessment that tests their mastery of writing skills covered over the
course of the year.

Angles in Writing: Open to juniors, new seniors, and post-graduates, this course emphasizes a variety
of approaches to critical thinking and effective communication. All aspects of Angles in Writing revolve
around the choices authors make and on the value/impact those choices have on the text. Readings
feature notable works in fiction, nonfiction, and poetry that underscore and examine the frame of the
storyteller/speaker -- including but not limited to Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, Toni Morrison’s The
Bluest Eye, and Tim O’Brien’s The Things They Carried. Throughout the year, students will learn various
strategies for exploring, analyzing, and discussing perspective and bias, and they will be challenged to
share and present their findings in scholarly and academic ways. They study style and vocabulary to
enhance their written and spoken expression of ideas. In the first semester, students write an essay —
mainly expository in nature — every two to three weeks. At midyear, students participate in the Junior
Writing Exam (JWE - an analytical essay written about a work of prose or poetry), and then progress to
more independent engagement with the presented texts ending with a research essay that focuses on
scholarly literary criticism. Students are required to pass the JWE in order to graduate from WRA.

STUDIES IN ENGLISH
Studies in English: (half credit/Fall and Spring/both semesters are required) These offerings are open
to all returning seniors. The department offers several half-year electives, giving students a choice of
an array of writing, writers, texts, and themes (seniors must enroll in English both semesters in order

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to graduate). Teachers design offerings that present compelling perspectives on the human experience
and on writing in the world. Each of these electives will foster attentive reading, engaged discussion,
critical analysis, and other forms of composition. Moreover, students will gain experience with other
forums for the presentation of their ideas about literature.

Detective Fiction: A Hard-Boiled Study of Sleuthing and Storytelling: This course is an exploration
of the development of and alteration to the genre of detective fiction. Most interesting will be
studying the origins, techniques, and characterizations that have made this one of the world’s most
read forms of literature. In this course, students will read, analyze, and respond to the texts often
and in different ways. This is not a course for the faint of heart; murder and the human heart can
be messy, disturbing, and often grotesque. We will examine archetypes like Dupin, Holmes, Spade,
and Marlowe, and we will explore the seedier side of human nature and detecting. Potential texts:
Murders in the Rue Morgue, Edgar Allan Poe; old-time radio programs; The Sherlockian, Graham Moore;
Sherlock Holmes stories; Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; and LA Confidential, James Ellroy.

Human Struggles: How does the way one handles adversity define who they are? How differently
do people interact and treat others who are going through something difficult? How do the ways we
process (embrace, face, avoid) our frustrations reveal character? In this course, we will explore many of
those questions and more in an effort to understand what the human struggles are and what it means
to struggle as humans. We will examine some of the ways physical, emotional, and moral struggles are
depicted in literature, and we will take an especially close look at the impact that group behaviors and
social relationships have on an individual’s mental health. Students will be asked to read, analyze, and
discuss literature often in an effort to grow and develop as writers and communicators. Collaboration
and participation are key to this course, and students must be willing to engage daily. Assignments will
vary in length, scope, and frequency, and we will conclude the semester with a Final Project.

Graphic Novels: “Comics are just words and pictures. You can do anything with words and pictures.”
These words spoken by underground comic Harvey Pekar convey a poetic truth about one of the
most influential yet misunderstood forms of literature: the graphic novel. In this course, we will read
both contemporary and classic graphic novels while we explore the history of the form, its cultural
significance, and the creative techniques graphic novel writers use to captivate audiences. In addition
to reading graphic stories, students will have the opportunity to create pieces of their own and get
feedback from their peers in the form of roundtable workshops. As a class, we will learn about the
evolution of this genre and how it has been used to confront and examine various aspects of the
human experience: politics, sexuality, class, censorship, violence, diversity, and more. Students can
expect daily reading quizzes, several analytical essays, along with many opportunities for creative
writing and graphic storytelling.

A Few of My Favorite Things: We are going to read a handful of novels that I enjoy and that I hope
you might also find valuable. There is nothing thematically holding these together; they’re simply
really good stories and respected pieces of literature. All of the novels have been turned into films,
and thus upon completion of a novel, we will watch and discuss the associated film. Ultimately, the
goal is to share a number of enjoyable pieces and to engage in thoughtful conversation about the
texts and the issues they raise. Hopefully, we will have some fun along the way. There will be regular
reading quizzes and a combination of personal and critical essays. I will also place an emphasis on
class discourse. We will talk about what makes effective participation, we will practice it, and I will
ultimately grade you on it. Texts are The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid; Shoeless Joe, W.P.
Kinsella; The Road, Cormac McCarthy; Deliverance, James Dickey.

Shakespeare, Page and Stage: Unlike novels and poems, play texts are not finished artistic creations;
they are guidelines for building a new and collaborative work of art. Every production rewrites its
play. In this class, we will study the most canonical author of all, Shakespeare, from the perspective of
performance: We will put ourselves in the shoes of audience members and study theatrical practices

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both in early modern London and in 21st-century America; we will view films and recordings of plays,
and attend a live, professional production. We will discuss how cutting, doubling, gender reversals, race-
blind casting, and changes of time and place allow us to see new things in these old plays. We will think
of ourselves as actors, as designers, and as directors (and our final project will bring together all these
ways of thinking) in order to explore how every performance choice is at heart an interpretation of the
play. The only requirements for this class are to be open, to be experimental, and to be ready to play
with Shakespeare. Possible texts include: Titus Andronicus, Measure for Measure, A Midsummer Night’s
Dream, Othello, and The Winter’s Tale.

American Nature Writing And Environmental Issues: This course attempts to explore the natural
world and our relationship with it. There will be two types of nonfiction readings for this class. One will
be what is known as “nature writing,” which are personal essays that explore the natural world for truths
that apply to our lives. This style encourages you to evaluate your individual definition of nature and
to think carefully about what we can learn from our natural surroundings. The other type of reading
can sometimes be emotionally charged and will deal with ethical issues related to our natural world.
These essays tend to be expository in style and will hopefully help us better understand the political
and cultural pressures which can influence our natural world and us. Writing will be exclusively personal
in form, and you will have the opportunity to address issues raised through class and to practice nature
writing itself. We will read one novel over the summer. Additionally, throughout the course you will
research an ethical issue with personal meaning to you, presenting your findings at the end of the
course.

Identity Crisis: When Cultures Clash: Jung famously described the shadow that lives within us, a
dark force confusing our desires and influencing how we act upon them. But light and dark never
cleanly align with good and bad; the line between is blurry, always shifting, and sometimes disappears
altogether. This course begins with the prototypical tale of one man torn between the push-and-pull of
identity formation: Batman. From there, we turn to characters who feel culturally dislocated. Both real
and imagined, our characters cannot make sense of the chaos around and especially within. Our subjects
feel alienated from the past and constantly grapple with the present. They have no idea where they
belong in the future. Literally and figuratively, they have been removed from home. They were from
Vietnam, Pakistan, Mexico, Jamaica, or Iran before they (or their parents) were here. Or, like Qoyowayma,
they (and their ancestors) were here, far before any of us were. Questions guiding our inquiry: How
does shared history inform our understanding of who we are? What happens at sites of cultural
collision? What is lost? Gained? Changed? And, how do uneven dynamics of power factor into cultural
confusion and its aftermath? Texts: The Dark Knight Returns (Miller); On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous
(Vuong); White Teeth (Smith); No Turning Back: A Hopi Indian Woman’s Struggle to Live in Two Worlds
(Qoyowayma); Persepolis (Satrapi)

Film Studies: A Baker’s Dozen: Whether you consider yourself a cinephile or you just like to watch
movies, chances are that knowing more about film history and craft would heighten your viewing
experience. While this course makes no pretense of providing you with a comprehensive purview of
either, it does seek to introduce you to some of the most game-changing movies of all time. Looking
at 13 films across the span of almost 100 years, you will learn to “read” film as text. Expect to develop a
working knowledge of film’s formal features (e.g. genre, mise-en-scène, cinematography, performance,
sound, editing, and of course, narrative). Expect to dapple in major theories about consuming moving
pictures. And expect to appreciate why auteurs like Charlie Chaplin, Marlon Brando, and Alfred Hitchcock
persist in our cultural capital. The final project is an opportunity to delve into subtopics like queer
cinema, media studies, and real-time broadcasting. Texts: Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927); Modern Times
(Charlie Chaplin, 1936); Casablanca (Michael Curtiz, 1942); Rashomon (Akira Kurosawa, 1950); West Side
Story (Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins, 1952); The Birds (Alfred Hitchcock, 1963); Apocalypse Now
(Francis Ford Coppola, 1979); The Shining (Stanley Kubrick, 1980); The Thin Blue Line (Errol Morris, 1988);
Goodfellas (Martin Scorsese, 1990); Rushmore (Wes Anderson, 1999); Spirited Away (Hayao Miyazaki and
Kirk Wise, 2001); Water (Deepa Mehta, 2005)

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Creative Writing: Fiction & Playwriting: This course is an exciting introduction to the basic elements
of fiction and playwriting, with in-class writing, take-home reading and writing assignments, and
substantive discussions of craft. Students produce, experiment, and react to a range of creative forms
as a means of developing different imaginative approaches to experience. The emphasis will be on
generating raw material specific to short stories and playwriting, in getting familiar with some of
the essential strategies for reading and discussing the writing of others, and in understanding and
recognizing the techniques and tools of effective writing and editing. Throughout the semester,
classes will be structured as a workshop -- where students receive feedback from both the instructor
and their fellow writers in a roundtable setting, and they should be prepared to offer their classmates
responses to their work. To ground our study, students will be expected to read 1-2 full-length novel(s)
and/or collection(s) of short stories (selections change yearly). For the course final, students are
required to submit for publication a polished work of any genre.

African American Fiction: Throughout our nation’s history, African American writers have found ways
to use fiction writing both as a means of self-expression and as a means to help create and cultivate
a unique and distinct African American culture. In this half-year course, we will examine the rich
tradition of African American fiction as we read poetry, short stories, novels, and dramatic pieces by
influential authors such as Octavia Butler, Zora Neale Hurston, August Wilson, James Baldwin, Lorraine
Hansberry, and Jesmyn Ward and look at how these writers are able to use made-up stories to hit
on timeless truths. Students will explore the various themes covered in these works and examine
the techniques employed to tell important stories, process difficult emotions, and celebrate various
cultural traditions. In addition to reading and responding to important works of fiction, students will
have opportunities to produce and share their own creative writing pieces throughout the semester.

African American Nonfiction: Did you know that activist and author Frederick Douglass gave
a commencement speech in front of our chapel here at Western Reserve in 1854? He used
this opportunity to lend his voice to the abolitionist movement as well as to speak up for the
disenfranchised. This moment is an example of how nonfiction can be used to express truth and
bring about social change. It is also an example of one of the important pieces of African American
nonfiction students will explore in this half-year course. In examining the powerful medium of
African American nonfiction, we will look at how writers such as Frederick Douglass, James Baldwin,
Maya Angelou, Ta-Nehisi Coates, and Jesmyn Ward use this type of writing to share messages from
the personal to the political. Students will read essays, memoirs, travel writing, and anthropological
pieces, as well as view documentaries and other creative video representations of truth. In addition to
considering the various literary techniques at play, we will examine the social impact each piece was
able to impart. Students will also have opportunities throughout the semester to try their hand at
creating compelling nonfiction works both in writing and on film.

Epistolary Writing: The word epistolary, which refers to that which is readily perceived by the eye
or the understanding and demonstrated by way of written communication—letters. The epistolary
genre recognizes the impact of shared confidences and reflective responses; it may include details
from authoritative sources, such as interviews, non-fiction prose, and even obituaries, all of which
provide important perspective and record. From the epistolary genre and writing that reflects a person
or self-conscious being, we will focus on a collection of relatively short works and then construct
cogent pieces of writing that respond informatively and creatively to show how such works impact us
or inspire us. This course will help inspire and strengthen each student’s efforts to create a body of
personal—sometimes unconventional—writing.

COLLEGE LEVEL COURSES IN LITERATURE, COMPOSITION AND RHETORIC
College Level English: (half credit/Fall and Spring/both semesters are required) CL studies are
designed to challenge and engage the most proficient and passionate WRA English students at
the college level. Exploring literature, composition, and rhetoric on deep and profound levels, CL
courses are offered in half-year electives, and seniors must enroll in English both semesters in

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order to graduate. All CL offerings will engage a range of literary expression—from fiction to poetry
    to nonfiction to text in performance—and assume facility with literary and rhetorical terms. The
    creativity, research, and synthesis necessary for such exploration will demand that students go well
    beyond the conventions of standard literary essays. Students will write in a variety of modes, including
    argumentative, reflective, and persuasive forms. Independence and initiative are essential (and
    assumed) for success in this course. Students—having demonstrated a serious commitment to and
    interest in the advanced study of English—wishing to enroll in the CL courses must have earned the
    recommendation from their teacher in Angles in Writing and must have earned at least a A- or better
    for the year in Angles in Writing. Students who are not initially recommended may petition with the
    English department chair and current teacher to register for the course. Students will register for
    their specific CL course electives in late spring, after teachers have developed their courses for the
    upcoming semester.

    Author Study: An In-depth Look: Modeled after traditional Capstone Courses in college, this
    semester long course provides advanced study of a significant author of the student’s choosing (with
    teacher approval). Individually, each student will focus on a selection of works by his or her chosen
    author, examining a range of issues associated with the writer’s literary canon, critical reception, and
    longevity. Coursework will include an in-depth study of form, style, and genre; social, cultural, and
    political contexts; dominant themes, motifs, and structures. This close examination of one particular
    writer offers students the unique opportunity to hone their own critical reading, critical thinking,
    and critical writing skills. Students will learn to identify patterns, mark noted deviations, and, when
    applicable, evaluate and assess representations of the author’s work. Frequent sharing of insights and
    researched findings will allow for fruitful and captivating academic exchanges of developing literary
    perspectives. At semester’s end, students will demonstrate their knowledge of their chosen author
    and their ability to synthesize information by presenting their findings to their classmates, select
    representatives of the English Department, and various members of the WRA community.

    Graphic Novels: “Comics are just words and pictures. You can do anything with words and pictures.”
    These words spoken by underground comic Harvey Pekar convey a poetic truth about one of the
    most influential yet misunderstood forms of literature: the graphic novel. In this course, we will read
    both contemporary and classic graphic novels while we explore the history of the form, its cultural
    significance, and the creative techniques graphic novel writers use to captivate audiences. In addition
    to reading graphic stories, students will have the opportunity to create pieces of their own and get
    feedback from their peers in the form of roundtable workshops. As a class, we will learn about the
    evolution of this genre and how it has been used to confront and examine various aspects of the
    human experience: politics, sexuality, class, censorship, violence, diversity, and more. Students can
    expect daily reading quizzes, several analytical essays, along with many opportunities for creative
    writing and graphic storytelling. In this CL course, students will accomplish much of what gets
    covered in the non-CL version of this course but will also read Scott McCloud’s text Understanding
    Comics which is considered “a seminal examination of comics art: its rich history, surprising technical
    components, and major cultural significance” (Amazon). The CL course will also examine through
    discussion and written discourse criticism of the genre and arguments against its being considered
    “real literature”. In the final project for this CL course, students will pair up to create a graphic retelling
    of a classic short story of their choosing.

    Shakespearean Lenses: Shakespeare’s cultural position--“the Bard”--is as undeniable as it is
    maddening. Shakespeare, after all, was a real person whose plays were never written to be “not of an
    age but for all time.” But they have become just that, and therefore this class will ask two questions:
    Why do we have (this) Shakespeare? And what do we do with him since we have got him? We will
    attempt to understand Shakespeare in his time and place, historicizing him and his works theatrically,
    culturally, and politically. We will also use Shakespeare to think about our own world, reading his works
    through various interpretive lenses such as queer theory, feminist theory, ecocriticism, historical
    materialism, textual criticism, and political theory. The ultimate goal of the class is to introduce
    students to the work that professional literary scholars and historians do, and to give them experience

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doing the kind of literary investigation they will be asked to do in college Shakespeare classes. Possible
texts include: Shakespeare’s sonnets (selection), A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Richard II, King Lear, and
Antony and Cleopatra.

Women and Fiction: We begin with Virgina Woolf’s groundbreaking thesis that “a woman must have
money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.” Our aim is first to understand Woolf’s vantage
point, and then to “flip it and reverse it,” à la Missy Elliott. In other words, we turn back to an earlier
pioneering work: Pride and Prejudice. Would Jane Austen have been even more prolific, shown even
greater genius had she enjoyed Woolf’s requirements of money and space? Next, we tackle work that
came in the wake of Woolf’s claim -- all novels firmly positioned in the canon of English literature,
irrespective of the sex or gender of their authors. Our aim is to apply pressure to Woolf’s claim, to test
for its relevance in a contemporary sense. Yes, all the work we examine was borne from women. If
you appreciate why -- perhaps especially if you cannot see why -- I invite you to enroll in this course.
Texts: A Room of One’s Own (Woolf); Pride and Prejudice (Austen); The Bloody Chamber (Carter); The
Outsiders (Hinton); The God of Small Things (Roy); The Blind Assassin (Atwood); Girl, Women, Other
(Evaristo) Films: Pride and Prejudice (Leonard); Daughters of the Dust (Dash); Little Women (Gerwig)

Matters of Memory: Years from now, what will you say about teenage life in the time of quarantine?
Novelist and activist Arundhati Roy recently described this historical moment as a “portal” between
what once was, and what will be. Do you agree? This course considers how memory shapes our
understanding of ourselves and the world around us. At times, we cradle sweet memories; at others,
we mull over sad, even paralyzing memories. Either way, memory can be hard to quit. Yet it is often
productive to not forget, to learn from what has happened. To complicate matters, memory is not
infallible. If anything, it is woefully marred. This course examines how and why memory matters
-- to you, to me, to everyone. We read fictional characters that process private memory, and non-
fictional voices that narrate public memory. In these latter instances, we must ask who is doing the
remembering, and why. Zadie Smith borrows from Shakespeare in her epigraph to White Teeth:
“What’s past is prologue.” Recollections of the spring of 2020, combined with readings of selected
texts, shall help us decide if we agree with her. Texts: Autobiographical Digression #3: Why We
Write (Markley); Twelve Words (Trapp); The Sense of an Ending (Barnes); My Father’s Brain (Franzen);
Imaginary Homelands (Rushdie); On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous (Vuong); Say Nothing: A True Story of
Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland (Keefe) Film: In the Name of the Father (Sheridan).

Power of Language: (half credit) This course explores the role language plays in the creation of
ourselves and our societies, how language reinforces our conceptual understanding of the perceivable
world, and how effective rhetoric can alter, reinforce or remake those understandings. If, as George
Orwell flatly stated, language corrupts thought, how does the English language manifest and reinforce
those meanings we derive? By examining nonfiction work by such thinkers as Louis Althusser,
James Baldwin, George Lakoff, Toni Morrison & Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o, we will explore how language
formulates ideas and institutions. Following our theoretical study, students will learn to act as
effective rhetoricians. Within the framework of the American Civil Rights Movement, we will listen
and read powerful uses of language, such as The Autobiography of Malcolm X, before moving to more
contemporary questions. By analyzing how language is used in everyday life, we may come to better
understand how a flag, statue or monument becomes imbued with meaning. Through class discussion
and argumentative essay writing, our class will enter into a lively and analytical discussion on these
topics.

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FINE & PERFORMING ARTS

    VISUAL ARTS
    Art I: (half credit/Fall and Spring) Introduces students to color theory, drawing skills and both wet and dry
    mediums. The process of learning how to create an art proposal before starting a project will be fostered.
    Throughout this course students will be presented with different mediums to explore and the opportunity
    to further their skill set within these mediums. The process of critique will be discussed and explored.
    Sketchbook required.

    Art II: (half credit/Fall and Spring) Students will build upon the foundation they have gained in Art I, and
    utilize this knowledge base to further develop their skills in drawing, painting, printmaking, and/or collage.
    This class will emphasize the importance of the implementation of the art proposal. Critiques will be more
    frequent. More of a self guided class- students focus on what they are passionate about and really get into
    it. Sketchbook required. Prerequisite: Art I and/or departmental permission.

    Environmental Art: (half credit/Fall and Spring) Students will use the outdoors as their canvas. Using
    different natural materials students will create installations indoors and outdoors. The elements and
    passage of time change and these art forms. Students must be prepared to work in the elements. Rain
    boots, rain/warm coat, and gloves are all required. Sketchbook required. Prerequisite: Art I or departmental
    permission.

    Advanced Studio Art/Portfolio I: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This course requires substantial
    commitment and a willingness to explore new ideas and the ability to express personal artistic vision.
    Students enrolled in this class are seeking opportunities to further their art education after WRA at
    the collegiate level or are deemed appropriate by instructors and have shown considerable growth,
    drive and commitment in the art studio previously. Sketchbook required. Prerequisite: Art I and Art II or
    departmental permission.

    Photography: → The photography course includes camera controls using DSLR cameras, studio lighting
    and special effects/applications. Students use Adobe Lightroom for post-processing and will create both
    print and digital portfolios. Originality, concept development, design qualities and craftsmanship are
    emphasized. Prerequisite: Art I and permission of the instructor.

    Ceramics l: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This class will take a look into the fundamental techniques used
    to create pieces out of clay including handbuilding, wheel throwing, carving, and wedging. As well as
    experimenting with different surface treatments to acquire the desired look including glaze testing, and
    firing. We will also be talking about the pieces made in a critique setting as a class, this way students learn
    how to talk about their artwork and explain their ideas. This class is for students who want to explore the
    medium and what they can do using clay.

    Ceramics ll: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This class will build upon skills learned in the Ceramics l class. We
    will explore new techniques and push the boundaries of the medium, becoming more comfortable using
    clay, as well as talk about the work made in a critique setting. This class will increase your confidence in
    using the clay, and ability to talk about your work. Prerequisite: Ceramics l or departmental permission.

    3D l: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This class consists of experimenting with creating 3D art with various
    materials, wood, wire, clay, and found objects. We will explore techniques used to create art using these
    materials and experiment with different ideas. Students will propose their idea, create the piece, then talk
    about the work in a class critique.

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3D ll: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This class builds upon the skills learned in 3D l. We will continue to
explore forms created with various materials; wood, wire, clay, found materials. After completing each
piece we will talk about them in a class critique setting, building on your ability to explain your art.
Prerequisite: 3D l or departmental permission.

DANCE
Dance: This course is for students who have no, minimal or intermediate dance experience. Dance is a
performance art that incorporates mind and body. It takes discipline, dedication and hard work. The main
focus of the course will be technique, which gives students a strong foundation for dance. Students will
be given the opportunity to work on their technique in the areas of ballet, modern, jazz and hip hop.
There will also be opportunities to experience other forms of dance such as tap and contemporary. While
studying technique, the learning, understanding and practice of dance vocabulary is stressed. Students are
required to participate in two performances, which are at the end of the first and second semesters. Over
the course of the year, students will study other areas of educational dance such as kinesiology, history,
composition and how to analyze/critique.

Honors Dance: Students must audition prior to enrolling in this course, which is a full-year course. Honors
Dance is for students with substantial dance experience, which includes strong technical ability and
training in the areas of ballet, modern and jazz. Dance is a performing art that incorporates both mind and
body. It takes discipline, dedication, and hard work. The main focus of the course will be technique, which
gives students a strong foundation for dance. Students will be given the opportunity to work on their
technique in the areas of ballet, modern, jazz and hip hop. There will also be opportunities to experience
other forms of dance such as pointe, tap and contemporary. While studying technique, the learning,
understanding and practice of dance vocabulary is stressed. Students are required to participate in the
two performances, which are at the end of the first and second semesters. Over the course of the year,
students will study other areas of educational dance such as kinesiology, history, composition and how to
analyze/critique.

MUSIC
Music students find ample opportunity for the study and performance of music at all levels at Western
Reserve Academy. Courses are offered in choir, string orchestra, symphonic winds and music theory.
Students may elect to take our performance courses — choir, string orchestra and symphonic winds —
repeatedly for credit and are strongly encouraged to do so.

Choir: The Academy Choir is WRA’s traditional mixed chorus and is open to all students regardless of level
of experience. While emphasis is placed on developing vocal skills and independent music reading, the
primary focus of this group is performance. The choir performs music of many style periods and genres and
is particularly proud of its history of multicultural works. Performance opportunities include a mid-winter
Madrigal Feaste, Vespers, a major work with chamber orchestra, singing at numerous WRA events and
occasional off-campus opportunities. Students seeking a more selective opportunity may also audition for
Chamber Choir and/or unReserved, our a capella group.

String Orchestra: The Academy String Orchestra brings together students who play violin, viola, cello and
bass. The ensemble primarily plays classical repertoire for string orchestra, occasionally combining with
members of Symphonic Winds to play music written for full orchestra. String players will also have the
opportunity to play chamber music and partner with The Academy Choir.

Symphonic Winds: The Reserve Symphonic Winds is WRA’s ensemble for students who play brass,
woodwinds or percussion instruments. This group plays standard concert band repertoire as well as
occasionally working in jazz or contemporary music. Band members will also have the opportunity to
participate in small ensembles and pep band. WRA has a small cadre of instruments for students who may
not have their own. While most members have prior experience, it is never too late to learn!
CL Music Theory: This course is intended to help students master the tools necessary for understanding

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the building blocks of music; they will gain fundamental understanding in musical notation, rhythm
    and meter, scales and chords. Some prior music experience (playing an instrument or singing) is helpful;
    students will gain expertise in active listening and do some composing as well as focusing on building aural
    skills. During the second half of the year, the focus will be on extensive work in harmonic analysis and
    writing music using the rules of the Common Practice Period.

    Studio Music: (half credit/Fall and Spring) Open to serious musicians looking to develop their skills and
    explore performance in a sophisticated way. Students will work on repertoire illustrative of developing
    excellence in their particular instrument/voice. Students must be able to practice independently and will
    be expected to demonstrate exemplary progress towards their targeted goals through performance. A final
    program/recital to showcase progress will be expected during each semester of participation. Prerequisite:
    Departmental permission and demonstrated expertise via audition or participation in WRA’s ensembles.

    The Jazz Ensemble is offered to students who want to develop and grow in their performance and
    understanding of jazz. Instrumentation is limited to those in a standard jazz ensemble: saxophones,
    trumpets, trombones, percussion, keyboards and guitars. Band members will learn advanced scales,
    sight-reading and elements of jazz theory. Band Members will perform varying styles of Jazz Literature
    that will include swing, bebop, big band, blues, Dixieland, funk, pop, rock, gospel, fusion and multi-ethnic
    repertoire. This is a performance-based ensemble, where concerts take place in the evening and perhaps
    on weekends.

    Digital Music Production: (half credit) This course will introduce students to the realm of music production
    and the necessary skills needed in this digital age. The focus of this course will be honing students’ ability
    to listen and analyze professional productions, ranging from Michael Jackson to Randy Newman to Avicii.
    Topics covered will include stereo processing, analogue and digital processing, compression, limiting,
    filtering, panning, reverb, and EQ. Mixing and creating a final mastered product will provide students the
    ability to actualize the different components in producing commercial level music. All D.A.W.’s (Digital
    Audio Workstations) will be explored with the main use of Apple’s Logic Pro. Both live streams, D.A.W.’s,
    and production courses will be made available to the students.

    THEATER
    Acting for the Stage: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This course uses both improvisational work and scene
    study to teach the student-actors how to effectively prepare for and perform a theatrical role. It introduces
    the basic idea of acting being grounded in utilizing an individual’s inner and outer resources. Coursework
    will focus on the same characterization development as explored in Stanislavski’s method of physical
    action. The course is also grounded in textual analysis and the development of certain physical techniques
    to create a character.

    Advanced Acting: (half credit/Fall and Spring or full credit) This course in acting will use scene study as
    the principal vehicle by which to continue exploring and expanding upon the concepts and methods
    introduced in Acting for the Stage. Using contemporary methodologies and eclectic techniques, such as
    the Uta Hagen and Stanislavski methods, direction and guidance will be individualized and based on the
    needs of each individual student actor. Depending on the number and attributes of the students enrolled
    in the course, there may also be a segment devoted to ensemble acting--a student driven performance
    of a chosen one act play that would incorporate the entire class. This course will provide a place for those
    students who would like to experience a more intensive, serious approach to learning the craft of acting.
    Prerequisite: Acting for the Stage or departmental approval (audition).

    Stagecraft: (half credit/Fall and Spring) This course blends theory with practice regarding the technical
    aspects of live events, and provides an opportunity to learn skills in carpentry, painting, lighting, sound,
    shop safety and design techniques. Students will explore the similarities and differences of mounting
    and enhancing performances of theatre, dance and music, and then experience these distinctions first
    hand as they help prepare for events in the Knight Fine Arts Center.

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HISTORY

Exploring Global Foundations: This course, required for freshmen, provides students with an
introduction to topics relating to the origins and developments of today’s global societies while
building the essential seminar skills of reading critically, asking insightful questions, presenting
and speaking gracefully and writing effectively. The histories of great civilizations will be viewed
through various lenses. Our approach will encourage students to understand seminal texts - religious,
philosophical, political, and literary - as an expression of universal human aspirations and cultural
development. The seminar format will encourage students to find their voices and express their views
on the essential questions the course will pursue. Furthermore, they will work collaboratively to
discover a better understanding of the foundations of the past that shape our world today as well as
the responsibilities of global citizenship.

Building the Modern World: This course, required of sophomores, begins its historical focus circa
1750, moves through the 19th and 20th centuries, and finally, ties into current events today. It seeks
to develop students’ abilities to think and question analytically through the study of the crafting of
modernity in religious systems, developing political structures, artistic expressions, and emerging
economies, industry and technologies. Students focus on political, economic and social concepts in
association with a selective survey of world cultures and also apply a comparative lens. The teaching
of skills will include the analysis of both primary and secondary sources, to acquiring geographical
knowledge and learning research methodology. Students will conduct a major research project
culminating in a research paper, teaching session, and participation in a poster conference featuring
their research topics.

United States History: This course, intended for juniors but open to upperclassmen, employs the
inquiry method and a thematic approach to studying the history of the United States. Each semester
students will explore a different theme that has influenced the development of our nation’s history
across time periods. Possible themes include migration, religion, gender/race, personal liberty vs. civic
responsibility, and industry. The investigation into each theme will be organized around the asking
of a number of central questions that will help guide students through their study. Students will
examine essential moments and/or crucial problems within the American experience from colonial
times through to the current era. In addition, the U.S. History course will seek to have students better
understand the global forces and interactions that have affected our nation’s people, influenced its
institutions, and shaped its ideals. Emphasis will be placed on gaining a better understanding of the
notion of citizenship and the incumbent responsibilities of a citizen within a democratic republic.

CL United States History: This course, intended for juniors but open to seniors, requires
departmental recommendation. CL US History provides a chronological survey of the history of the
United States of America, starting from the colonial period and continuing to present day. This college-
level survey introduces students to the major themes, events, and people that comprise the history of
the United States of America; however, it also trains students to do the research and inquiry work of
historians so as to interpret historical and modern events. As such, CL US History employs a seminar
format to allow students the opportunity to find and develop their voices. In addition to gaining a
better working knowledge of key historical events, individuals, and movements, emphasis will be
placed on analyzing primary source documents and understanding the nature of historical causation.
Additionally, a clear emphasis is placed on understanding the essence and evolution of American
democracy. Finally, students will pursue a research question of their own choosing and will share
their findings in one of three formats--a research paper, documentary film or website. This research
component culminates with all students in CL US History participating in the National History Day
Contest held in February and their projects serve as their final exam. Prerequisite: A- or higher in BMW
and departmental permission.

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Introduction to Arabic and Arab Cultures: (half credit/Fall) Introduction to Arabic and Arab Culture,
    is an exposure to the Arabic language similar to a first semester university Elementary I course.
    Using the first text of the popular Al-Kitaab Arabic language program entitled Alif Baa: Introduction
    to Arabic Letters and Sounds students learn the alphabet, both by writing Arabic script and correct
    pronunciation. Emphasis is placed on the development of basic listening, speaking, reading, and
    writing skills. Classroom teaching is accompanied with online drills and exercises in addition to cultural
    notes. With the introduction of new vocabulary simple conversations and dialogues will be practiced.
    The second component of the course focuses on the culture of the Middle East through viewing films
    and popular media, attending a Friday prayer service at a local mosque, tasting the regional cuisine,
    and listening to popular music artists from Egypt and Lebanon.

    Middle East Studies: → A survey of Middle East/North African history from the advent of Islam to
    the present day with particular emphasis on the period since 1900. A comprehensive review of the
    emergence and expansion of Islam and its impact on the region will be an integral component of the
    course. Selected topics such as Arab nationalism, the impact of western expansionism and colonialism,
    and the strategic and economic importance of this region will also be examined. In order to gain an
    understanding of the varied and rich cultures, complex history, and tensions in this region of the
    world, current events, art, film and poetry will also be introduced. Students will be assigned secondary
    and primary source readings in history and current events. They will also select a particular issue
    related to a Middle Eastern country to explore in depth, which will culminate in a final presentation to
    the class.

    Art History: Raphael to Renoir: This course focuses on the Western Canon established in the early
    Renaissance and follows the development of various art mediums through the Impressionist Masters.
    The arrival of the artist as personage/celebrity will be one of the themes as students examine famous
    “masters” (both male and female) through the lens of how they worked, their styles, and the way
    in which they lived and crafted their image as professional artists. The course will seek to look at
    movements and their masters in depth, studying their lives and the evolution of their catalog of
    works. Students will have the opportunity to read and study artist sketchbooks and manuscripts and
    to undertake creative projects. Students will watch documentaries detailing the artistic process and
    artists’ lives, and examine issues such as collection, theft, restoration and art curation. Additionally,
    guests — such as alumni working in the art world/industry — will be invited to interact with our class
    in person or digitally.

    Art History: Paint, Build, Shoot! This course focuses on art, architecture and photography of the 20th
    century. Beginning with the post-impressionists, students will explore how the art world explodes with
    new schools of art (futurism, abstract expressionism, minimalism and pop art). Students will also look
    at innovations in architectural design from Art Deco to Art Nouveau to the groundbreaking work of
    Frank Lloyd Wright and Frank Gehry. Finally, students will explore photography as art using the lenses
    of photographers such as Ansel Adams, Annie Leibovitz, Margaret Bourke-White, Dorothea Lange,
    Robert Mapplethorpe and Sally Mann. Students will delve into the catalogs, the collections and the
    writings of these photographic pioneers. Documentaries, museum visits and guest speakers, as well as
    creative projects and presentations, will form part of the experience of “Paint, Build, Shoot!”

    CL Art History: → During the first half of the year, this course focuses on the Western Canon
    established in the early Renaissance and follows the development of various art mediums through to
    the Impressionist Masters. The arrival of the artist as personage/celebrity will be one of the themes
    as students examine famous “masters” (both male and female) through the lens of how they worked,
    their styles, and the way in which they lived and crafted their image as professional artists. The course
    will seek to look at movements and their masters in depth, studying their lives and the evolution
    of their catalog of works. Students will have the opportunity to read and study artist sketchbooks
    and manuscripts (such as Brunelleschi’s Treatise on Perspective, Vasari’s Lives of Artists, Da Vinci’s
    diaries, Gauguin’s Paradise Found, and memoirs and letters by artists such as Claude Monet, Berthe
    Morisot and Emily Carr). Students will watch documentaries detailing the artistic process and artists’
    lives, and examine issues such as collection, theft, restoration and art curation. Additionally, guests
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— such as alumni working in the art world/industry — will be invited to interact with our class in
person or digitally. During the second half of the year, the course focuses on art, architecture and
photography of the 20th century. Beginning with the post-impressionists, students will explore how
the art world explodes with new schools of art (futurism, abstract expressionism, minimalism and
pop art). Students will also look at innovations in architectural design from art deco to art nouveau
to the groundbreaking work of Frank Lloyd Wright and Frank Gehry. Finally, students will explore
photography as art using the lenses of photographers such as Ansel Adams, Annie Leibovitz, Margaret
Bourke-White, Dorothea Lange, Robert Mapplethorpe and Sally Mann. Students will delve into the
catalogs, the collections and the writings of these photographic pioneers. Documentaries, museum
visits and guest speakers will also form part of the experience of this course. CL students will have
higher requirements of content mastery and will undertake a research project.

CL Economics: The aim of this course is to provide an advanced introduction to the basic principles of
micro and macroeconomics. The course will begin with a general overview of the nature of “economic
thinking.” It will then relatively quickly transition into an investigation of the basic microeconomic
concepts of demand, supply, market equilibrium, market regulation, market failure, the effects of
taxation and subsidies, the four basic product markets, and the operation of resource markets. After
this, the remainder of the course will be devoted to gaining understanding of the workings of the
macroeconomy: GDP, unemployment, inflation, the banking system, the operations of the Federal
Reserve System, fiscal and monetary policy, and international exchanges of currency, capital, and
goods. Students will also acquire understanding as to how various schools of economic thought have
arisen, and compete with one another over time, to explain the driving forces at work within the
macroeconomy, guiding it either to stability or erratic behavior. Much of the course will entail gaining a
working knowledge of the basic graphic models used to describe and explain all of the aforementioned
concepts.

International Relations: → This course is an introduction to the field of international relations
by examining the most prominent issues in world politics –e.g., international law, cooperation,
diplomacy, human rights, war and terrorism. The course aims to introduce students to the basic
principles and concepts of political science in general and international relations in particular. This
will be done through analyses of various theories, actors, and issues relating to international politics.
Utilizing a variety of conceptual and theoretical tools of analysis, we will study current events and the
recent history that has shaped how states and other actors interact with each other across national
borders. For students who are interested in understanding the causes of war, the underpinnings of
international trade or the role of NGOs in fostering (or undermining) international peace, this course is
for you!

CL United States Government and Politics: → This course examines various concepts and key
institutions in the United States government and political system. Students completing the course will
understand and be able to critically analyze such concepts. The following topics are covered in depth:
constitutional democracy; republicanism; political beliefs and behaviors; political parties, branches of
government; interest groups and mass media; institutions of government; branches of government;
bureaucracies; courts; public policy; and civil rights and liberties. Emphasis will be put on exploring
the rich diversity of American political life, showing available institutional alternatives, and explaining
differences in processes and policy outcomes.

Space Race-Fighting Cold War on New Frontier: (half credit/Fall) Open to juniors and seniors
interested in exploring the American reaction to the Soviet’s launching of Sputnik I in October of 1957
and the historical context of the subsequent establishment of NASA and this agency’s development
of the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo space programs designed ultimately to land men on the moon and
bring them safely back to earth. The course will entail a close reading of Tom Wolfe’s epic piece of New
Journalism, The Right Stuff, as well as a detailed study of a more conventional narrative history of the
early American space program. The viewing of documentary films will, likewise, be a principal feature
of the course. Students will be asked to take a lead role in planning and conducting some of the

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